A record of the Sportsman's Battalions during the First World War, including a database of soldiers who enlisted in - or served with - the 23rd, 24th and 30th Royal Fusiliers, originally raised by Mrs. Emma Cunliffe-Owen in September 1914. If you have any questions or comments, please send to fmsketches@macbrem.com, thanks!

October 28, 1914

The Glasgow Herald


Satisfactory progress is being made with the recruiting of a Scottish contingent for the Sportsman’s Battalion (Royal Fusiliers), which has drawn to its ranks in England many men of splendid physique. At the offices in the Central Station Hotel, Glasgow, where recruits are being enrolled this week by Captain Westhead, over 40 men have joined since Monday morning. The battalion is appealing specially to men of good education who also possess uncommonly fine physique. The standard of height must be nearly as possible 5ft. 9in. There are in the the Army many excellent corps composed of men but for the most part fall short of that height, but as the Sportsman’s Battalion has almost reached its establishment on the 5ft. 9in. basis it would not be fair to those who have joined to complete it by lowering the standard. Moreover, it is evident that the remainder will be obtained without resorting to any modification. The intention at present is to recruit beyond the establishment numbers. Early application by those eligible is therefore advisable. Captain Westhead, who is to spend next week on a similar recruiting mission in Edinburgh, hopes to raise a Scottish company. An excellent beginning has been made.

Edinburgh Evening News


Lord Maitland makes the following final appeal: Recruiting in Scotland for this corps will be extended a little longer. Captain Westhead will be in attendance to enrol recruits at the following places: Glasgow–Central Hotel, every day this week, Edinburgh–Royal Hotel, November 2 to November 7, inclusive. As after this recruiting in Scotland will end definitely, this is the last possible chance for sportsmen there to join this corps, which includes some of the greatest cricketers and big game hunters, men well known in the rowing and racing worlds, while the social standing of many of the recruits is of the best. The quarters are in beautiful country at Hornchurch, Essex, and are unusually complete in every detail. Lord Maitland is in command. It is the only corps for which the age limit was specially extended by the War Office to forty-five, and thus it affords their only opportunity to sportsmen in Scotland who are debarred by the age limit from joining other corps, as recruiting in that country comes to a definite end on the above dates. This battalion interferes in no way with recruiting for other branches of the service. Country applicants already enrolled can be medically examined and attested by the military recruiting officer in their district. Those who have not received forms for presentation should write immediately for them, to the Officer Commanding, Sportsmen’s Battalion, Royal Fusiliers, Hotel Cecil, Strand, London.

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